Traversing through the haze: exploring the human perspective of smoke from fire
Document Type: Journal Article
Author(s): Stacey Sargent Frederick; Christine S. Olsen; Eric L. Toman
Publication Year: 2013

Cataloging Information

  • NWFSC - Northwest Fire Science Consortium
  • public opinion
  • public perceptions
  • smoke impacts
Record Maintained By:
Record Last Modified: September 8, 2017
FRAMES Record Number: 14242


The air in the valley settles like a grey blanket, engulfing residents with lingering smoke for what could be days or weeks. The smoke might come from a wildfire being fought miles away, a prescribed burn, or a neighbor's woodstove or burn pile. The wind may sweep this low-quality air away or it may linger until the winds of the next season change. Until then, the community lives in a bubble of poor quality air with restrictions on further smoke-producing activities. How does this smoke affect people? Do people know where the smoke comes from and does such knowledge affect their attitude towards it? Do concerns about smoke preclude the use of prescribed fire? Gaining insight into public attitudes toward smoke is important in making decisions regarding its management. To investigate these questions, we conducted a mail survey of households in four sites across the US in 2012. Nearly 1000 people responded to the survey.

Online Link(s):
Link to this document (947 KB; pdf)
Frederick, Stacey Sargent; Olsen, Christine; Toman, Eric. 2013. Traversing through the haze: exploring the human perspective of smoke from fire. NWFSC Research Brief, Spring 2013. 3 p.